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Hardball Weekend

News/Business. The best of 'Hardball With Chris Matthews.'

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Richard Perle 4, Us 4, Iran 3, Bob 3, Christie 3, Baghdad 3, Iraq 3, Ron 3, Chambliss 2, Chris Christie 2, Kasich 2, Neutrogena Naturals 2, Showtime 2, Intermezzo 2, John Kasich 2, Campbell 2, Sandy 2, U.s. 2, Post-saddam Iraq 2, Msnbc 2,
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  MSNBC    Hardball Weekend    News/Business. The best of  
   'Hardball With Chris Matthews.'  

    March 23, 2013
    2:00 - 2:29am PDT  

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well. >> i'm assigned transfer papers to go to a lower security prison. before they could refuse them. but now you can't refuse it. >> what is going to happen to you? you'll miss him. >> i might do a little ccu time. i don't know. i don't know how i'm going to react to it. but it's going to suck ass. >> i would rather be here. >> when he leaves this cell will the be the last time i see him. it believes me 33 left to do. he can be out within 15 years but he'll never be allowed to come back into the facility to see me. that's my best friend. >> at least i'll get letters in 15 years. there's a positive side to it.
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>> whenever i get to wherever i'm going i'll get a proof of correspondence but it's not same thing. >> i just want to let you know, chas, i miss you brother. keep your head up. hopefully i'll see you soon. >> david carr, man, you already know how i feel about you. it's going to suck when you leave. but right now the goal is to make sure you hit the streets. so keep your head up. try not to -- i'll try not to skitz out.
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while your gone. shameless. let's play "hardball". ♪ good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me start tonight with this. i hated the iraq war, said so when i saw it coming. have said so since. the only time i held back from that early criticism which began when i saw the run up coming was in the early days and when it looked like our forces were being well received when i had no real choice, but to root that the forces that suffered already were being justified. who in this country would not
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have held that hope especially since it was too late to do anything else? i would much rather america succeed, by the way and be wrong than the other way around. anyway, but here we are, the other way around. it turns out in my opposition to the iraq war was well considered. the war didn't liberate people. it did what anyone could have predicted and it put the shia in power, took the sunni out of power and removed the buffer from iran. gave iran an ally and did nothing to bring peace to the middle east which is why the shamelessness of the hawks is so obnoxious today. the people who took us into this ruthless propaganda now slink back into quiet, proud, i don't know what to think of a better word for it than shamelessness. they never come clean in selling the war. they will never come clean in admitting how they succeeded in it. you will know the height to which they rose and the depths that they descended to hiding their guilt.
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he's opposed it from the beginning and ron susskin has won a pulitzer prize and author of " confidence men." recently appeared about a showtime document about life and legacy and says he doesn't have any regrets. let's watch cheney. >> i did what i did. it's all on the public record, and i feel very good about it. if i had to do it all over again, i'd do it in a minute. >> cheney's right about one thing. it is all in the public record and what would that record show? what it shows is an unbelievable string lies, distortions and inept analysis on the part of him, the former v.p. take a look. >> regime change in iraq would bring about a number of benefits to the region.
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when the gravest of threats are eliminated the freedom-loving peoples of the region would have the chance to promote values that could bring lasting peace. >> simply stated, there is no doubt that saddam hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. there is no doubt that he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies and against us. >> do you think the american people are prepared for a long, costly and bloody battle with a significant american casualties? >> i don't -- i don't think it's likely to unfold that way, tim, because i think we will be greeted as liberators. >> i remember at the time it showed a modest majority of americans that opposed the war that would bring a significant level of casualty. the selling of the war announced not just that the war was justified and would have a limited cost. an insignificant level of casualties by americans and look what happened. your thoughts? >> you know, this was not either a war of choice nor a war of necessity as tim russert said. it was a war of will.
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simply the will of cheney, bush and the team. it was a matter of how to do it, find me a way to do this and 9/11 provided that excuse. what's interesting is when you look at the whole chain of events, is how many lies there were. this was not a question of them wondering about wmd. it is a question of building a case that they knew would be hollow and figuring out once they were successful and once the troops were in there and on the ground, no one would care about the rationale that just caused, so to speak, for what gets us into iraq. ultimately, it shows itself to be a lie that was cynical and one that was pre-ordained and premeditated from the start of the administration. >> you know, i attribute it to something grander than evidence. it's my experience of dealing with cheney over the years. his brain soup. certain people are hawks and some people tend to be sadistic about it. sadistic.
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cheney strikes me as a guy who wants to rub out his enemies politically. any enemy. >> what you -- >> david first. >> what you see in the clip that you just showed in the showtime film by l.j. cutler was a complete absence of self-reflection. no regrets. no we could have done it better. if we could do it all, i might have done this. >> do you think he enjoys this stuff? >> i think he believes and this may be psychotic on his part that eventually he will be redeemed and justified, but lawrence wilkinson in the documentary -- >> the chief of staff to colin powell. >> that will be on later tonight had a great word for this. he describes very simply what ron just said. he called it a hoax, and when you sell a hoax you've got two things. you've got to want it to happen and you have to believe it a little bit and you have to have somewhat of a psychological imperative and maybe a psychotic personality to make it work. >> you're thought, ron? >> you know, when you have a big lie, you've got to have a big
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denial to follow it and the denial's got to be resilient. one of this size is the type that people go to the grave with, and it's hard to watch cheney, and the whole gang of neocons smiling at the camera saying now what do we do? next syria, next iran because the fundamental principle of this whole gang is one they still believe in preemptive war that the united states is the lone super power in the world and has a right to invade any country for any reason we decide. we don't even have to give the reason. that's the notion of preemptive war and they thought iraq would be a demonstration model and of course, it's a demonstration model of the very opposite of the limits of u.s. power when we strip ourselves was fundamental principles that have defined us as a nation, but right now, we just will look at the camera and not flinch because the fact is that they've left themselves little choice and it's hard to listen to at this moment, chris, because a real discussion about
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these ideas about preemption which is their big concept, their big domino theory actually would be good for the american people, but they won't do it. >> they're never going to oppose the idea of aggressive war because this is aggressive war and we're part of it now. in the run-up to the war in iraq nobody was a bigger hawk than richard perle, a real intellectual, a member of the pentagon's defense policy board. he repeatedly asserted that saddam hussein had ties to osama bin laden and was feverishly working to acquire a nuclear bomb and he promised, richard perle did, that the war would be over in a matter of months. this week he was asked a very important question. i think it's a good question. his nonanswer is informative. let's listen. >> ten years later, nearly 5,000 american troops dead, thousands more with wounds, hundreds of thousands of iraqis dead or wounded, when you think about this, was it worth it? >> i've got to say i think that is not a reasonable question. what we did at the time was done in the belief that it was necessary to protect this nation. you can't, a decade later go back and say we shouldn't have
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done that. >> so don't ask whether he should have gone in or not. another unrepentant war hawk. he was deputy secretary of the defense at the time of the invasion and here's what he wrote on fox news' website this week. as a strictly military matter if the war in iraq had ended when we got to baghdad it would have been victory. the point is the war went sour after the occupation began. if only someone had thought about that what happened after we invaded the country. back in 2003 he didn't seem too concerned about that. take a listen. >> there's been a good deal of comments and some of it quite outlandish about what our post-war requirements in iran. some of the higher end predictions such as the notion that it will take several hundred thousand u.s. troops to provide stability in post-saddam iraq are wildly off the mark. first, it's hard to conceive that it would take more forces to provide stability in post-saddam iraq than it would take to conduct the war itself and to secure saddam's security forces in his army. hard to imagine.
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>> you know -- >> i've never mastered the ability to speak as if every word of opinion i offer is a fact that's been received. it's already done and there's been a verdict cast. these neo-cons and many of them can be charming people. perle certainly is, and they're great to have dinner and they're fine, but they speak in a manner with total, absolute conviction or salesmanship, if you will, translates that it sounds like that's true when they argue things that they haven't been established and they deny they can go in there easy and it will be an easy war and we'll get the cheap oil and everything will be great and hardly anybody will get killed and they say it as if they're god. how do you explain that, ron. >> well, it's the notion of ideology. we have history's big idea. we may go to our grave not having the proof that we desire, but we will not flinch. we will stick to the script and remember, this is a gang of guys that have been together for a very long time, chris. they've got to scrape down and
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they don't want to be challenged what richard perle says don't ask why. did those young people die in vain, and that's the question that crushes them and that's why they're running right now as best they can. >> i wish in a way it would crush them because i don't see that crushing. i was driving in the car two days ago with my 13-year-old daughter when i heard that interview with richard perle. she looked at me when she said that's not a reasonable question and says who is this man? >> and what did you say? >> he's one of the people who gave us this war. >> i mean, to say that it's not a reasonable question to look at the cost of your action afterward to see if it justifies it and when paul wolfowitz says the only problem is that, you know, the war went on after we reached baghdad otherwise it had been great up until then is almost like saying if we had an arm of a million giant flying
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robots things would have turned out better. it's denying reality and to ron's point, you ask them how can they think this way, they're not concerned with the real world, with expertise, with measuring cost and benefits because they think they're above it. they don't pay the costs. this is all a giant lab experiment for them and they know better than the intelligence people, they know better than the -- >> it's a stupid answer, though. because admiral yamamoto who is not a bad guy, he didn't want to attack us at pearl harbor, he'd he would have said, if it had stopped at pearl harbor, it would have been a good war for us. from the time we arrived in baghdad, the war was over. no, it just began! >> your last thought, ryan. >> they ran an experiment on the whole globe and it failed and at this point that's why you have truth and reconciliation commissions. give everyone immunity, but at least get the truth out so we can have reconciliation before these guys leave the stage. >> thank you. i think that's a good idea.
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i wouldn't mind some water boarding along the way and get some information on these guys. >> it's not torture. >> it's not torture. hey, mr. cheney, you don't think this is torture and how about trying out this machine and maybe we'll get truth out of you. just kidding. >> we don't believe in that stuff, do we? >> you were a great reporter and a great author. thank you for coming on. [ female announcer ] new neutrogena® naturals acne cream cleanser with acne-fighting medicine from the wintergreen leaf. this effective cleanser cleans into pores. treats and helps prevent future breakouts. without dyes, parabens, or harsh sulfates. for clear healthy skin. naturally clear skin has never felt so beautiful. [ female announcer ] new acne cream cleanser. only from neutrogena® naturals. in the middle of the night it can be frustrating. it's hard to turn off and go back to sleep. intermezzo is the first and only prescription sleep aid approved for use as needed in the middle of the night
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welcome back to "hardball." the republican party has moved so far right that any time a hint of reasonableness creeps into a republican's comments especially comments from an elected republican that person is quickly snapped back into line. that's what happened this week when ohio governor john kasich who i liked changed his position on gay civil unions. let's watch what he said. >> rob portman made news this
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past week with his position on gay marriage and changing it because of his son coming out. could you ever see a position, a time when you yourself might change your position? >> i really can't see one. i mean, i talked to rob and encouraged him, and, you know, if people want to have civil unions and have some way to transfer the resources i'm for that. i just think marriage is between a man and a woman, but if you want to have a civil union, that's fine with me. >> twice he said that one answer it's okay to have civil unions and gay marriage and civil unions are no small matter in ohio. in 2004, a ballot measure out in the general election amending the ohio constitution to outright ban gay marriage and civil unions and that was with the evangelical vote, and that's w.'s favor and winning him the presidential election with john kerry. it was a huge issue in 2004 and it was against gay marriage and civil unions. the cleveland playing dealer was all over kasich's comment reporting that ohio governor
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john kasich saying he supports civil unions for same-sex couples and went on to quote the spokesperson, this is a staple from the spokesperson, the governor's position is unchanged. he opposes gay marriage and opposes changing ohio's constitution to allow for civil unions. well, so much for that. and he's far from the first republican to feel the heat from the fringe. joining me right now is msnbc contributor ron reagan and errol lewis. first, i'll comment on that one. kasich is a fine guy, a bit of a maverick and he's had a tough life in many ways and he says what comes to mind and he's thinking out loud and he says you know what? i'm not ready to go all of the way on my position, but civil union, i can live with that and civil you know knows and he said it again and within hours his flack comes out with a written statement to make sure it's
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getting picked up saying he didn't say what we heard him just say, ron. what's going on here? >> he gave is straight. he seemed to demonstrate that on the one hand he doesn't really have a position that he is susceptible to pressure from the right and he also demonstrated and this is relevant to the republican party as a whole that he's way behind the curve of history now. the public, as a whole is moving in a pretty clear wye this issue and mr. kasich seems to be moving and the republicans in the opposite direction. this is a recipe to end up in the ash can of history. >> you know, it's unfortunate when somebody won't stand up and fight for their principles which appears to be the case on some level with the governor. more important, though, is the party and the conservative forces that maybe made him backtrack because it's the governors who are sort of the secret weapon of the republican party, if they ever want to get back into national power in the way that they'd hoped. >> why are they?
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>> they are the ones who deal with practical matters and somebody like a chris christie in new jersey or nikki haley in south carolina and rick perry in texas and ideally maybe even governor romney in massachusetts. they deal across the aisle and they deal with the practical issues and they can help the party sort of see where the country's going and move ahead in a practical matter and take credit for it if the party is smart enough to take advantage of that. >> practicality, bipartisan thinking and nonideological thinking is the reason why people liked republican governors so easily. they don't like to make a big ideological choice and giving a reasonable bipartisan, nonideological answer. i haven't thought much about it and it sounds fine to me. it's a reasonable answer as a gi that doesn't give much thought to something and even if you're a governor. you're not allowed to do that if you're a republican anymore.
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anyway, thank you. chris christie meets the press. the third grade press. literally. [ male announcer ] how do you measure happiness?
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back to "hardball." now the "sideshow." first the week with chris christie and new jersey younger generation. it's not unusual on whether christie will get questions on whether he'll run for president and not usually from someone who won't be able to vote in 2016. >> i'm a third grader at the elementary school. um, you've done a great job here in new jersey, and i was wondering if you were thinking about running for the president.
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>> do you work for msnbc? i'm not thinking about running for president right now because i've got a job to do here, and i've got an obligation to all these folks. you can't worry about fourth grade until you finish third grade, you know? i can't worry about this until i do this job. >> earlier in the week christie took on an even younger crowd. a class of kindergartners. >> did you come here in a limo? >> no, i came here in something even better. i came in in a helicopter. >> whoa! >> it landed on your field over there. what was i doing? >> nothing. >> nothing? that's pretty usual. probably just talking, right? that's what this job is about, a lot of talking. >> was the president's wife enchanting? >> was the president's wife
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enchanting? yes, actually, she was. she's very smart and she's very nice. >> good hit as we say in politics. next, if nothing else, georgia republican saxby chambliss leads the week with comments that leaves you thinking, what's that supposed to mean? on whether he would change his position on gay marriage. chambliss says i'm not gay, so i'm not going to marry one. chambliss is not alone in making a situation based on his own person situation. first former senator john kyl of arizona. in '09 he wanted to cut out the part that required employers to cover basic maternity care because it made everyone's insurance more expensive. >> i don't need maternity care, and so requiring that to be in my insurance policy is something that i don't need and will make the policy more expensive. >> that's big thinking. anyway, a colleague of his later pointed out that kyl's mother likely needed some services at one point and then there was the
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fiasco overstates affected by hurricane sandy. back in january, 67 house republicans voted against providing flood insurance for sandy victims and it turns out that 37 of them have a history of supporting aid after natural disasters when their own states were affected. missouri congressman sam graves was one of them, and here's what he said in 2011 when his state was dealing with a severe flood damage. i urge the president to approve this assistance without delay. many communities along the river have been stretched to the limit preparing for and fighting this unprecedented flood. finally, oklahoma senator jim inhofe in 2006 had this to say during a debate on gay marriage again. >> as you see here, and i think this maybe is the most important prop that we'll have during the entire debate. >> my wife and i have been married 47 years. we have 20 kids and grandkids. i'm really proud to say that in the recorded history of our family we've never had a divorce or any kind of a homosexual
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relationship. >> so, mr. inhofe lives in a world of straight, marital perfection. la dee da. but in this statement of self-celebration had to do with debate on same-sex marriage? it's anyone's guess. [ male announcer ] this is bob, a regular guy with an irregular heartbeat. the usual, bob? not today. [ male announcer ] bob has afib: atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem, a condition that puts him at greater risk for a stroke. [ gps ] turn left. i don't think so. [ male announcer ] for years, bob took warfarin, and made a monthly trip to the clinic to get his blood tested. but not anymore. bob's doctor recommended a different option: once-a-day xarelto®. xarelto® is the first and only once-a-day prescription blood thinner for patients with afib not caused by a heart valve problem, that doesn't require routine blood monitoring.